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Dead Prez - Lets Get Free (Cover Artwork)

Dead Prez

Dead Prez: Lets Get FreeLets Get Free (2000)
Relativity

Reviewer Rating: 4
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Contributed by: wehavecomeforyourchildrenwehavecomeforyourchildren
(others by this writer | submit your own)

With all the terrible indie hip-hop coming out nowadays, I figured I'd write a review for a rap group that actually has something to say. Although since this release Dead Prez has signed to a major label, changed a lot as people, and seen a decline in the quality of their music, it doesn't change th.
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With all the terrible indie hip-hop coming out nowadays, I figured I'd write a review for a rap group that actually has something to say. Although since this release Dead Prez has signed to a major label, changed a lot as people, and seen a decline in the quality of their music, it doesn't change the fact that Lets Get Free is one of the best rap albums out there.

A lot of you may have even heard Dead Prez before and not even known it; I've noticed that their '99 single "It's Bigger Than Hip Hop" is used as background music on "Chapelle Show" on at least a couple of episodes. Anyways, Dead Prez is two guys from Florida who are pissed as all fucking hell at just about everyone, but mostly white people. The opening track, "Wolves," is spoken word over a simple beat. It gives an analogy relating white people distributing crack in the black community to hunters in the Arctic who trick wolves into cutting themselves and bleeding themselves to death.

It's not all kill whitey though. Dead Prez is also pissed at the school system, the police, and the media. Sounds like punk rock to me. While sometimes the lyrics sound, well, a little dumb, they almost always have a strong, smart message. The lyrics of "They Schools" talk about how public schools don't teach people the things that they need to know. They only teach kids how to be obedient so that they can get a job for someone else, make money for someone else, and live in poverty. "Police State" is one of the standout tracks. Here's some of the first verse: "I want to be free to live, able to have what I need to live, bring the power back to the street, where the people live. We're sick of workin' for crumbs and fillin' up the prisons. Dying over money and relying on religion for help. We do for self like ants in a colony, organize the wealth into a socialist economy. A way of life based off the common need and all my comrades is ready, we're just spreading the seed."

I don't know about you, but I think that's a whole fuck of a lot better than the Gym Class Heroes composing a song of name-drops, especially when the names dropped are among the worst in independent and mainstream music. If I may go off on a tangent and leave Dead Prez for a moment...how the fuck did that band get signed? And who bought their record??? Okay, I've composed myself, back to Dead Prez.

You should have about a general idea of what Dead Prez is about by now, but I'll bet you wouldn't have guessed that they're vegans. In the song "Be Healthy," Dead Prez stress proper nutrition. It's supposed to serve as a wake-up call to everyone out there who's not eating properly, drinking too much, or putting anything in their bodies that just doesn't belong. Dead Prez stress a strict diet of fresh fruit, vegetables, tofu, lentils, and weed. Seriously, they think everyone should smoke weed. They even at one point rhyme "fresh squeezed juice from oranges" and "gangja." They pull this off by pronouncing oranges more like "awranjas." I think it works. Anways, they also warn against liquor, tap water, and improperly cooked food that may have lost some of its vitamins and minerals.

If I was reading this review, I would think this sounds like the greatest album ever. But then I would go out, buy the CD and hear the song "Mind Sex." At that point I'd realize it does have its faults. But find out for yourself and you will be pleased with the overall quality of this release.

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
The Arrivals - Volatile MolotovMinor Threat - Complete DiscographyPropagandhi - Less Talk, More RockDescendents - Everything SucksPoison Idea - Feel the DarknessBad Brains - Bad BrainsPropagandhi - Potemkin City LimitsRefused - The Shape of Punk to ComeWu-Tang Clan - Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)Propagandhi - Failed States

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
publichousing (March 27, 2010)

I guess I'll re-word my comment abit, seeing as it comes across abit simple. This is a really good album and it's amazing how long it's remained as a hip hop album people point to when trying to show others the political/incendiary underground of hip hop. When I saw them live they focused quite a bit on this album, and this was ten years later. They did however not play 'Police State' which was a tad dissapointing, as it is one of their best tracks on this album and in their entire catalogue. These guys are seriously great stuff.

PublicHousing (May 6, 2009)

Great album. Starts well and ends well. "I'm A African" is a great song. The song "Propaganda" is pretty mad too. I like it, i like the lyrics, pretty incendiary. Cool shit.

blowme (July 14, 2006)

POOR people got it hard, no matter what race they are.

blowme (July 14, 2006)

Once again, they often as HELL use lyrics that have NOTHING to do with the ruling class or questioning the government. There's a difference between questioning the government and being overwilling to trun every use of a word like "blackboard" into an issue of "racism".

(I understand the past and everything, but even back in the slave days, we had whites against slavery. I mean, A WAR was fought over this shit. I listen to some black artists who are racial, like 2Pac & the Coup, but Prez just takes this whole "fuck whitey" to an annoying level.Please defend this crap:

1. "I hate calling niggas niggas, but I got no love for whitey and I love calling them crackaz"- sounds pretty general and many of the more racist members of their fanbase buy into that numbskullery.

2. video for Hell Yeah- attacking a pizza guy is just a statement about being poor? Then why didn't they also attack non-white people?)

I agree on the Christian thing and separation of church and state(compassionate conservatives can be really ignorant). Black people suffering from poverty---how does that equal a racial issue? A LOT of people suffer from poverty. Not just whites holding down blacks. I'm not conservative by a longshot, but this whole "only white people can be racist" myth is politically correct crap.

rancidsucks (July 13, 2006)

Every time I hear some white fucker accusing black people of racism I want to shoot them in the face.

There is nothing about DP's message. They use "white" in the same way socialists use "middle-class" or feminists use "male". White people who think they're being discriminated against because some blacks start questioning their power are worse than Christians who think they're being persecuted because not everything is being governed by the church.

If I was black and I saw what I've seen on this site I would fucking hate white people as well.

blowme (July 2, 2006)

You're right, I don't know what it's like to be black OR poor. I do know a LOT of the racism black groups fight is caused by some of their members' own double standards. I've even had some black people agree with me, though it may not be very "politically correct". *wanking motion at PC* Despite the past, ALL racism must be attacked, in the present. (Some of those new Black Panther Parties of the type that influenced DP are, in essense, just a black KKK) And even if not in terms of economics, in terms of unity, addressing this only helps, as far as reaching a large portion of white America for whom they want to listen, but won't if their side can't also maturely admit their own flaws/hypocrisy.

There's a difference between being bitter and being able to look at things maturely. I understand the past, but as I said poverty is bigger than race. Double standards CAUSE more of the hate they say they want to fight. Think about it. If a white kid grows up in a mostly minority neighborhood, and is tired of being picked on, then a skinhead or White Nationalist group jumps on their confusion and tells them "with us, at least, you'll be strong, have allies", do you not think more could have been done to prevent that group from brainwashing this kid? Like attacking the tudes that encouraged him to join (which was BOTH the skinhead group AND the racist minorities)

I'm not saying be insensitive to the past or what has happened, to black people. Fuck, white people have been evil as FUCK, and still continue to lead the race in that field to this day, with certain ones. Forgetting history only insures that it may happen again. And a LOT needs to be done currently to raise our economy and ensure equality for all. BUT, hate is hate, and anti-white racism is just like any other form of racism. Shit against white people in general has just been sliding too for long because we (rightly) feel guiIty about the past. If you are a white person who had a family member or friend who was a hate crime victim, you'd get where I'm coming from. Racism againat the innocent white people being ignored in society, only causes more strong feelings of separatist mentality. I am not going to let white guilt or political correctness turn me into a flaming pussy. We should still speak for innocent victims on our side. The hate crime laws need to apply to white people,also. Fuck the backlash.

This may be a small message in the big picture, but ignoring one form of racism only ensures that that partcular group will not want to listen much. That's not a good thing, when it's the group you want to listen. I realize that Prez themselves may not mean to be racist, but their shit is VERY racist, and only inspires more racism.

notfeelingcreative (July 1, 2006)

"Instead they are too busy talking about robbing pizza delivery drivers and "running up on crackers."

Do you always take lyrics so seriously, it's not like they tell people to actually do the things they rap about!!? Until you're black (and ignore this whole post if you are)or I'm black we have no right to tell them how to feel or how to act, you and O have no idea how it has felt to be kept at a substandard level in america for 200 years, their music is much more pro-black than it is anti-white! I think it's disgusting that every ti,e a hip-hop group makes a political statement, white kids freak out and go "oh shit, they're racist agaisnt us!!!". If you grew up poor and saw other people who were basiacally handed nice cars, good food, and nice homes, you'd be bitter too!

blowme (June 30, 2006)

Oh, it must be so hard being white. Twat.

I never said that, you fucking idiot. It's hard to be POOR.Black people sufferng from poverty is NOT a race issue, as there are plenty of whites also sufering from poverty. I work in an area bad for racist retarded redneck fucks. (KKK and shit), Don't think I haven't seen some ignorant ass white people, in my time. BUT, that's not everyone. Tell me, in all honestly, that Prez' lyrics and much of their fanbase aren't INDISCRIMINATELY racist as fuck. ("I hate callin niggas 'nigga', but I got no love for whitey and I love calling them cracker"- That sounds like a broad as fuck sweeping generalization about white people in general to me)

I had people very close to me almost shot by two racist "thugs", so if you're gonna tell me that it doesn't happen on both sides, I'd punch you square in the face for my could-be-dead bros. And it wouldn't surprise me at all if these guys that robbed them llistened to
Prez. Encouraging this shit is not revolutionary in the fucking least. You gotta be mature about attacking racism. These guys FAIL. PERIOD. And, YOU'RE the twat.

rancidsucks (June 28, 2006)

A white guy can't even make a racial joke without getting shit. If my brother or friend were shot walking through Harlem, I'D be called racist for wanting it to be called a hate crime.

Oh, it must be so hard being white. Twat.

Anonymous (June 24, 2006)

While M1 and stic.man may not themselves be racists, the music they have created definitely is racist. It's a shame because I find them to be extremely talented, and almost every other aspect of this album is amazing. If they cut out the hypocrasies they could focus on making the world a better place for everyone who struggles under modern oppressive systems. Instead they are too busy talking about robbing pizza delivery drivers and "running up on crackers."

What should be an intelligent call to action is reduced to aural pollution.

Anonymous (June 4, 2006)

Racists against racism. How does that work? Classism is bigger than racism and their philosophy sucks. What's sad is that these guys spit some of the most indiscriminately prejudice lyrics and are STILL taken so seriously that they're invited to perform at "anti-racist" cultural events(???!!!). A white guy can't even make a racial joke without getting shit. If my brother or friend were shot walking through Harlem, I'D be called racist for wanting it to be called a hate crime. That's some pretty extreme double standards. I got nothing to do with some crooked cops or racist Nazis or corrupt government officials. FUCK Prez. Even if they have some good points.

Anonymous (May 6, 2006)

what the fuck are you fucking white punk idiots talkinb about dead prez

Anonymous (April 30, 2006)

"Plus, I've heard alot more white people throw the word 'nigger' around than I've heard black people use dergotory terms for whites? Do we even have a word for whites that's equivalent to that word? I sure as hell can't think of it!"
Thats cause whites don't get so damn offended so damn easily. Its just a word.

Anonymous (January 21, 2006)

It's a pitty having such a waste of good capacities.

Racism, not racism, white people hateness, white people compassion, black power, black compassion... Life is too short, whoever you may be and what you think; if it makes sense for you to support a continuous vicious circle just to confirm and empower your feeling of being right, than go ahead for it; some people still try to save others in this world, whatever their colour may be.

So many things in my mind at the same time, can't even say it all here, but one for sure: this topic confirms the irony of racism and there are defenitely, stil, a lot of mixing up of so different matters.

Good thing for D.Prez, there are still people willing to buy their records and recomfort themselves in their thoughts. Don't you get it? People sell you what you want to listen to; such records work so good for black racism-afiliated people, just like movies of enchanted worlds work for kids; it's such a well known marketing strategy: recomfort people in their feelings. And nothing, not even this that I am writing, will change most of those who are already anchored in this path, because you can always find a way to confirm you're right... just has you would be able to justify the oposite... but that would be too easy, way too easy ;)

You want another example? Look at US movies; it always trys and depicts the life of the worst clichés, so people who practice them (the majority) can recomfort themselves and stay under control, id es bring no change to their behavior. Pay attention next time you watch a movie, and recognize clichés. The more the clichés/the more people can see their behavior as being a "nice one" (read: "it even shows on the movies!"), the better it sells.

It really is a pitty.

Discipline surely makes things easier.. But know what you want to do. Most dictators were so adept of discipline.

The truth is still to come. So is understanding.
Luís Vaz de Camões, Lisbon, Portugal

Anonymous (January 16, 2006)

ded prez is the best album i have ever heard( LETsget free) especially for a young black male that is making something of his self in college and also a loving father. and I love gangsta rap i mean ihate buying cd's from walmart because ther's no cursing in them but this is one album that i think no hip hop lover can front on the lyrical content is amazing and so true it just makes you think and Im someone who is not as militant as these two brothers are.the albun is great cant wait for more

Anonymous (January 5, 2006)

Askari X from this band, dead prez, recorded anti- white song song called "Hide Tonight", where he describes killing white toddlers for the hell of it. He also states that he hates all whites and that there is nothing wrong with killing others based on their skin color. Now if a white person did the same, all of their releases after the racist statement would be ignored by punknews.org. Nice double standard Epitaph and punknews..

Anonymous (November 5, 2005)

What? Skrewdriver and Dead Prez are doing a split 12"
Hope they come on a support tour through my town!

Anonymous (October 7, 2005)

Since rap turned bad, Dead Prez gave me something to listen to. They're lyrics are really smart and nothing like the rap nowadays.

How ever, I'd like to add my two cents to defend them.

The one thing I see a lot in this argument which is just not true is saying how they are racist. When they refer to "white people" they mean America in general. I believe someone said "lack of funding in schools" is what they are talking about. Not the "White Man keeping us down." They're saying the lack of funding and apathy in schools in the problem.

And to back up my statement they support Non Phixion: Ill Bill, Sabac Red, Gortex, and DJ Eclipse. All White. In their thank you notes it says as following "Thanks for your help in making us a success" are JEDI MIND TRICKS and DEAD PREZ."

Anonymous (October 1, 2005)

"What's next, a Skrewdriver review?"

Hey now.... I got yelled at earlier this year for hating on skrewdriver. apparently they had a non-fascist album once, and the educated punks tell me that this is a reason for not just dismissing the band outright. I guess I'm ignorant if I choose to dismiss an early record by a band who later went on to be one of the worst racist bands ever (regardless of a lineup change).

What kills me is the Skrewdriver defenders will just as easily dismiss thousands of other bands for FAR MORE superficial reasons (its emo, screamo, on Thorp records etc) but will defend that one skrewdriver record to the death. The worst part is, I've heard that record and its just sped-up chuck berry riffs with generic Oi vocals.

-ken

Anonymous (September 30, 2005)

"Just keep blaming whitey for everything and then wonder when whitey will come and fix all of your problems. Suck it up ghetto losers, you've been given handouts, a free education and roofs over your heads. You fools worship money, consumer goods and diamonds.

This is America, if you don't want to work to improve yourself, we'll just import someone to take your place in the job market. There's some Mexicans who would be more than happy to have a job in the USA."

Sounds nice, coming from someone with enough class privledge to have time to waste on a computer. Go walk into the fucking hood and tell all the poor people there to work harder and that they've all been given the same opportunity as you. See how far that gets you.

Anonymous (September 27, 2005)

What's next, a Skrewdriver review? They blame Jews and black folks for everything wrong in their lives.

Anonymous (September 27, 2005)

Why is this being reviewed here? It was released in 2000 and is not punk album. Face it, Dead Prez and TheCoup are a bunch of racists that blame all their shortcomings on white people.

Just keep blaming whitey for everything and then wonder when whitey will come and fix all of your problems. Suck it up ghetto losers, you've been given handouts, a free education and roofs over your heads. You fools worship money, consumer goods and diamonds.

This is America, if you don't want to work to improve yourself, we'll just import someone to take your place in the job market. There's some Mexicans who would be more than happy to have a job in the USA.

Anonymous (September 27, 2005)

you white people are so retarded.

AlmostPunkEnough (September 27, 2005)

i like the name AlmostFunk...

you're kinda making my point, everyone's self view is distorted by the culture. if you wanna say it's the 'white culture' or white america dictates said culture, i can't really argue.

the question is more why can't people rise above this? i don't fit into what the media thinks is the sterotypical white male, and i doubt you do either. technically i live right at the 'poverty line', and love and have lived in shitty neighborhoods, shouldn't i fall into the category of these 'poor minorities'? or is the difference solely that i am white and they're black? nobody treats me any differently than any random black person around here, cops included. i drive a beat up car and i've been stopped frisked and searched plenty of times.

maybe i live in the wrong area to have a real view of the issue. none of this is as much of an issue in NY than it seems to be everywhere else. besides, i just keep rambling and forgetting whatever point i was supposed to have.

Jennapoonie (September 27, 2005)

If you listen to their lyrics or read interviews with the Dead Prez, you should be able to realize that they are not racist. I am a multiracial person and grew up in suburbia. Like most people in our society, I have been brain washed by the media to think of black people as lesser people. Until recently, I hated to think of myself as black and I look like a black person. This brainwashing is the result of the work of our ancestors, who have brainwashed our parents and grandparents who taught us to think the way that we do. The Dead Prez are talking about issues that minorities face everyday. These are the same issues that we try to ignore just to make ourselves feel better. If you listen the music of Anti-Flag or other socially aware bands, they say the same things but they use different words. You can be an ellitest and pretend like the world is perfect or you can listen to what others have to say about how our society has failed them and try to correct the problem.

notfeelingcreative (September 27, 2005)

Plus, I've heard alot more white people throw the word 'nigger' around than I've heard black people use dergotory terms for whites? Do we even have a word for whites that's equivalent to that word? I sure as hell can't think of it!

notfeelingcreative (September 27, 2005)

I mean to type 'minorites'

notfeelingcreative (September 27, 2005)

"'what mindless bullshit and a total copout. black people can't be racist but can be prejudiced? you're contradicting yourself on 2 terms that mean the same thing. and isn't your blanket label of blacks being incapable of racism, a bit, judgmental and dare i say, racist in itself? by your interpretation of the dictionary, that would mean asians,latinos and native americans also cannot be racists? what about conflicts between blacks and other minorities? to me, the black guy that calls my friends a chink or a spic is no better than the kkk, damned if he was called a nigger his whole life. you either are or aren't one. the color of your skin, no matter how much the "man" is holding you down, doesn't preclude anybody on this earth from being a racist."

First of all, the two terms do not have the same meaning. Someone can have a prejudice opinion of someone that has nothing whatsoever to do with race! I used black people as an example, but if you must be completely specific, no asians, lations, and other monprotes cannot really be racist either, racism is mainly comitted by whites! A balck man who calls an asiann man a chink is in fact no better than the KKK, but he has no official stance of authority of superiority over him. Look at it in terms of gender we typically don't refer to females as 'sexist' because we live in a male-dominated society! If you'd like I could sight other places that use these same arguments, this was not somethiing I proceded to pull out of thin air I've also taken courses on race relations, I'm not saying i'm an authority on the subject at all, but I have done research.

Anonymous (September 27, 2005)

AlmostFunk,

Are you saying that black self-perception in general isn't affected by the white institution that distorts EVERYONES' views, regardless of race?

-Will

wehavecomeforyourchildren (September 26, 2005)

james is my new favorite person on punknews.org

also, i think it sucks that my username shows up on my reviews as "wehavecomeforyourchi"

it could at least have a ... or something

-sam

Anonymous (September 26, 2005)

Why do people still take the time to argue with BSD? He's a retard and a troll, ignore it.

This album fucking rules, but their other albums aren't nearly as good, judging from those I've heard.

joeg (September 26, 2005)

"Also, black people cannot be 'racist' they can be 'prejudice' but until black people control enough of america to actively prevent the advancement of white people they cannot be truly 'racist' (well, by the general dictionary definition they can)."

what mindless bullshit and a total copout. black people can't be racist but can be prejudiced? you're contradicting yourself on 2 terms that mean the same thing. and isn't your blanket label of blacks being incapable of racism, a bit, judgmental and dare i say, racist in itself? by your interpretation of the dictionary, that would mean asians,latinos and native americans also cannot be racists? what about conflicts between blacks and other minorities? to me, the black guy that calls my friends a chink or a spic is no better than the kkk, damned if he was called a nigger his whole life. you either are or aren't one. the color of your skin, no matter how much the "man" is holding you down, doesn't preclude anybody on this earth from being a racist.

Anonymous (September 26, 2005)

So racist cds are being reviewed here now. Interesting. Oh wait, I mean, with some research and probing it has been decided that they might not be racists. Fucking whatever.

Dante3000 (September 26, 2005)

Canibus will bite those nuts off and then rock with them. Listen to the albums Mic Club and Rip the Jacker and see if you can say that again without lying.
If you don't like Canibus' debut, you are INSANE.
Should I cover myself with bodypaint and blow Wyclef before listening to those albums to get the full experience?
Just fucking around, sorry Canibus has never been my thing. I just find he's like The Busdriver where people hear one or two of his bigger songs and think he's the shit, but there is soo much useless shit inbetween it doesn't make it worth the time and energy to listen to it.
-Dante
P.S. Since we're all throwing around Hip hop names to sound cool, my personals,
P.E. - It takes a nation of millions is teh shit! (yeah I typed teh)
Blackstar - and the respective work of the MC's.
Saul Williams- Pick up Amethyst Rock Star first, that album will fuck your head up.
The roots- ...IT'S THE ROOTS FUCKER, BUY IT!
Blackalicous - But I'm not too grand of Gift of Gabs solo work...it's too ehhh.
Sure there are more but enough posturing. Besides, some of my best friends are black and I've had six black people in my house.

Anonymous (September 26, 2005)

yep, they do have some nice lyrics...
'Nigga don't think these record deals gonna feed your seeds
And pay your bills because they not
MC's get a little bit of love and think they hot
Talkin' bout how much money they got, all y'all records sound the same
I sick of that fake thug, R & B, rap scenario all day on the radio
Same scenes in the video, monotonous material,'

'Mind Sex' is a killer song...listen to it with a girl

Amen. If you don't like Canibus' debut, you are INSANE. That record is ths shit and I still love it as much as when it first came out. It brings back to high school days. Yes, canibus put out some pretty shitty albums (2000 bc), but his last 2 or 3 were really good.

That being said, Immortal Technique is awesome.
Some other essential hip hop albums that you should check out are the Arsonists 'As the world burns', The new High and Mighty, Lost Boyz, Mobb Deep, and Big L.

Anonymous (September 26, 2005)

I love this record. Dead Prez confirmed my suspicions that "whitey" to the poor black man is the same catch-all anatagonist as the bourgeois is to the socialist. I still wanna see the rap battle between Nelly and one of the Dead Prez guys.

-Ken

Anonymous (September 26, 2005)

Although I sorta dig this album, that song Wolves pisses me off. It makes the whole crack/wolf trap analogy, but that really only works if you assume the average member of the black community is no smarter than a wolf. Seems like flawed logic to me.

stevejonestherealbones (September 26, 2005)

i like my prez without the "r", thank you very much

- jones the bones

- stevejones8770@yahoo..com

AlmostPunkEnough (September 26, 2005)

Will, i don't think they should feel like it's 'them' being represented, it's a good chunk of the urban population, sure, but there's lots of other ideals too.

i think it's somewhat disrespectful to say that they feel imprisoned my how 'white america' perceives them. not to mention i don't think most urban black kids give a shit.they feel much more held down by the police, and by the way they're treated when they wander into white neighborhoods.

sit on the subway one day and just listen to conversations people have. a lot of these kids eat this shit up, they sit there talking about 'gettin money' and whatever materialist things are in fashion at the time, a lot like all the rich white kids who sit in the same seats at different times during the day. materialism is rampant throughout the youth culture, not just in the hood. i don't really know if i have a point, i just think that most people have more of a clue about society than others give them credit for, they just don't really give a shit.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

"Hip-hop attitude and punk have nothing in common, though. Just because it's anti-establishment doesn't make it "punk." From my experience, punk is a lot less glamour-oriented, and no respectable punk band would ever brag about what they have or complain about what they wish they had."

What experience is that? It seems as if around these parts punk is all about buying every disc released, memorizing the insert, and then catalouging the album for years in the name of being some sort of guru... now as somewhat of a spectator of these forums (who also spends too much $ on punk rock), I appreciate your often unpopular opinions. i just feel that punk and hip hop run parralel lines, and like others, feel that you just have been exposed to the good stuff. Judging by your posts about topics such as the objectification of women i figured you would be into the hip hop tradition of calling shit out straigt up. I reccomend Mr. Lif.

And the guy below me is right on.

-james

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

Saying Dead Prez hates white people is like saying the Black Panther Party For Self Defense was racist which it was not.

Panther leader Bobby Seale summed it up: "We do not fight racism with racism. We fight racism with solidarity. We do not fight exploitative capitalism with black capitalism. We fight capitalism with basic socialism. We fight imperialism with proletarian internationalism."

When they say 'The White Man'...they mean Rockerfeller, Waltons, Hiltons, Bush, Reagan...not some poor white bum on the street nor some white middle class hippie in the subs. They mean the people that own and control industry and government.

Staxic (September 25, 2005)

I found out about Dead Prez from a band called The Coup that is signed to Epitaph. Coup is West Coast angry rap with a social agenda. I wouldn't put either band down as the next messiah that's going to save music, but they're more interesting than the pop punk trash that is being peddled these days. At least it's not rated G!

I like both bands - also listen to some De La Soul - for a change up. Can't live on punk rock alone!

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

"2) Canibus sucks my balls."

Canibus will bite those nuts off and then rock with them. Listen to the albums Mic Club and Rip the Jacker and see if you can say that again without lying.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

Dead Prez brings back the 'punk' in rap like Public Enemy and NWA back when Rap didn't suck ass.

long live the Dead Prez

and Kanye west doesn't hate white people. george does.

mikeinflames (September 25, 2005)

i heard dead prez hate white people ... just like kanye west

drawaflower (September 25, 2005)

my public education and democracy teacher played "They Schools" for the class on the first day last week. It was really good, despite the fact that her speakers were shitty, but it was an amazing song.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

I actually have both of those albums. I saw Saul Williams last March (I think it was March, maybe it was May), and he was definitely one of the top ten live acts I've ever beheld. And the cool thing is that in his "Telegram to Hip Hop" he basically has the same complaints that I do. Mos Def is cool, but can slip into lyrical stupidity sometimes (especially when insulting someone with "fag" or rapping about a girl with a nice ass)- also, he was great when he played an informant on NYPD Blue.

-Will

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

Fuck debate, we all know what is right and just in the world. I'm finding lately that I can't argue with people when I am unable to articulate what I really feel and know is right.

-Not-To-Regret

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

yea their beats are sooo good. very catchy stuff. and also DP is way better than immortal technique. that guy has some good stuff, but sometimes he borders on conspiracy theory and he can be a bit over the top on some stuff. but that is of course just my opinion.

Cos (September 25, 2005)

If you're having trouble getting into hip-hop Will, its probably just because you haven't heard the right stuff yet. I didn't like hip-hop too much until I saw Mos Def live, and it was like a religious experience for me. And actually, I'm still very picky about what I like.

Now, if you're looking for something non-mainstream, a few records come to mind. For "conscious" hip-hop (I know that term is hated, but I don't know how else to describe it), check out
-Mos Def "Black on Both Sides"
-Brother Ali "Shadows on the Sun"

for something lighter and playful :
De La Soul "3 Feet High and Rising"
Pharcyde "Bizarre Ride To" (although they can get really mysogynistic, its mostly just for fun)

--Cos

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

"not to mention that no one is forcing this culture on urban youth, they embrace it. they also see all these rich white suburban kids despreately emulating them, it must be flattering somehow. it's the culture that dictates the art, not vice versa."

Bullshit. Say what you will, but I think if 99% of how you're represented on TV and radio is as ignorant, materialistic assholes, then you'll probably feel a little pressured to find your own niche in the mess just so you can say you fit somewhere. They embrace this bullshit because as of right now, and for the last 20 years, it's the only thing blacks do that's widely recognized.

-Will

rkl (September 25, 2005)

< i>Dead Prez - Lets Get Free
Posted by inagreendase on 2005-09-25 00:34:27

the Gym Class Heroes composing a song of name-drops, especially when the names dropped are among the worst in independent and mainstream music.

Yes, because Death Cab, Cursive, Sunny Day Real Estate, Planes Mistaken for Stars, Hey Mercedes, At the Drive-In, ...Trail of Dead, Jets to Brazil, and Hot Water Music are widely considered outright terrible bands in independent music, especially around these parts.

Dude, hate the song all you want for its cheesy, likely "look at us we've got cred!" purpose, but you can't deny that a good portion of the namedrops are credible, well-respected bands in their respective niche .

if you'd tossed in afi, you wouldve named all the bands 15 y/o girls listen to to be different. bravo, sir, bravo

who the fuck respects death cab for cutie?

score's for the album.

notfeelingcreative (September 25, 2005)

"If I wanted to read about this I would be on thug gangsta drive by shooting 20 inch rims news.org this is pointless to have on here seriously.... G unit and such"
A lot of punk and hardcore fans also listen to dead prez. I'd much rather read a review of this than whatever whiny garbage Vagrant is putting out.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

grow up?
If I wanted to read about this I would be on thug gangsta drive by shooting 20 inch rims news.org this is pointless to have on here seriously.... G unit and such

Dante3000 (September 25, 2005)

Wow...there is some hatin' on Dead Prez in this place. Honestly, they're an awesome group and I really respect what they do. Not my favorite hip hop act, but a fucking really solid one.
-Dante
P.S. To the guy who said he used this as a coast:
1)Expensive coaster, even used. Good Job asshat.
2) Canibus sucks my balls.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

I remember using this CD as a coaster while listening to Canibus, Killah Priest, Public Enemy and MF Doom.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

Dead Prez certainly have important things to say, but like many others their message tends to get caught up in the flaws of their genre. The end result is an album that is revolutionary on paper only.

notfeelingcreative (September 25, 2005)

"This one time I wss reading reviews on PUNKnews.org..."

Grow up.

mjg (September 25, 2005)

these guys are so ridiculously good. every rapper should strive to be like this...and their beats are top notch as well.

wehavecomeforyourchildren (September 25, 2005)

to the kid right below me, immortal technique is good as fuck. i don't have any of the albums for some reason, but i ought to.

to will,
dead prez don't brag about having material shit. take these lyrics for example.
"would you rather have a lexus or justice? a dream or some substance? a necklace, a beamer, or freedom?"

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

Immortal Technique owns this. In fact, 'Revolutionary Vol.2' owns pretty much any hiphop cd.

Truth.

-opivy

AlmostPunkEnough (September 25, 2005)

but Will, that's what the 'hip-hop' audience wants, they wanna see people from the ghetto 'makin' it'. most of these artists take their songs as entertainment, not art. it means nothing to them. you really think Bridman and the Ying-Yang Twins have anything to rap about besides money, Bentleys, and dealing drugs? seriously.

the artists that used to have something to say have since realized that nobody wants to hear it. they wanna see videos with chicks whith huge tits and shaking asses, and these dudes rolling around in expensive cars. you can say all you want that they should be positve role models, but tha's not where the fame is, not where the money is. the fact is, whether they're right or wrong, Dead Prez raps about what they think is important, and they get almost no recognition for it. the vast majority of rap fans have never heard of them, and never will.

not to mention that no one is forcing this culture on urban youth, they embrace it. they also see all these rich white suburban kids despreately emulating them, it must be flattering somehow. it's the culture that dictates the art, not vice versa.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

This one time I wss reading reviews on PUNKnews.org...

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

"Yeah because no one really gives a shit about the plight of the suburban white male. If you came from nothing and got rich you'd brag to. I'm not pretending to know anything about where you're from or how you grew up, but if a man grew up in the ghetto and now drives an escalade, he can be as proud of it as he wants."

I'm not going to put down anyone who's proud of acheiving material wealth, but I'm not going to respect it or take it seriously, either. The materialistic "what you have is what you are" mentality in hip just perpetrates a falseness among young people in the ghetto... When they see Snoop Dogg and Jay-Z riding around in million dollar cars, they aren't thinking "wow, I'm glad these guys were able to achieve that status in a way that's distinct mostly to black people", they're saying to themselves "if only I had that ride, then I would be something- without money like that, I am not worth shit." I'm not saying that all hip-hop groups are like that, but it seems like the majority of them are, and even a lot of underground ones.

-Will

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

im really glad this was reviewed on this site. this site's getting better and better. honestly.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

this is THE album that got me into hip hop. its fucking AMAZING. the secret track "propaganda" is the best rap song EVER.

xblakeyoung (September 25, 2005)

This record is great. Great for any hip hop fan. I also suggest Blackalicious' "A2G" EP or Public Enemy's "Fear of A Black Planet"

8dollarclarinetsolo (September 25, 2005)

they seem like the hip hop anti flag?

notfeelingcreative (September 25, 2005)

Yeah, actually I heard the song and saw the music video on FSTV. They're full of shit... Not representing minorities? My mom teaches African-American literature for an entire semester of her English 1 class at Northeast Highschool. It's standard."

Wow, well when I was in HS the only black people who were mentioned in classes were Dr. King, Dread Scott, Nat Turner and Crispus Attucks, maybe curriculum has changed now or maybe it's different in differnet parts of the map. However, had I been a minority at my school I probably would've idnetiified with the aforementioned song.

notfeelingcreative (September 25, 2005)

" and no respectable punk band would ever brag about what they have or complain about what they wish they had. "

Yeah because no one really gives a shit about the plight of the suburban white male. If you came from nothing and got rich you'd brag to. I'm not pretending to know anything about where you're from or how you grew up, but if a man grew up in the ghetto and now drives an escalade, he can be as proud of it as he wants.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

Yeah, actually I heard the song and saw the music video on FSTV. They're full of shit... Not representing minorities? My mom teaches African-American literature for an entire semester of her English 1 class at Northeast Highschool. It's standard.

I respect them for being non-gangsta hip-hop, but as usual, their reasoning falls on its face and they come off as irrational bigots somewhat.

-Will

notfeelingcreative (September 25, 2005)

Anyways I prefer son of nun to dead prez!

notfeelingcreative (September 25, 2005)

"I am not going to comment about everything this band does, but if their arguments against the police and media are as half-assed and stupid as those against the school system, I find it hard to take them seriously."

Have you actually heard the song, or are you just going by the review? The song is more about black people being unrepresented in most school curriculums and the fact that schools don't make enough of an attempt to reach out to black youth, in the opinion of the group. I will grant that DPZ are not Public Enemy, but it seems like people are trying to portray them is the hip-hop answer to anti-flag, which does not do them justice.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

Overall, hip-hop is something that's hard for me to get into. I love some of the music, hate the majority of it, like some of the lyrics, but hate most of them.

Hip-hop attitude and punk have nothing in common, though. Just because it's anti-establishment doesn't make it "punk." From my experience, punk is a lot less glamour-oriented, and no respectable punk band would ever brag about what they have or complain about what they wish they had.

Was Tupac punk? NWA? Please... As someone who sees punk rock as an intelligent movement, I'd have to say "no."

-Will

notfeelingcreative (September 25, 2005)

Dead Prez can't hate white people, who do you think are the people buying their records? Their references to white people on their records (much like Public Enemy before them) are directed towards white america as a whole not individual white people Also, black people cannot be 'racist' they can be 'prejudice' but until black people control enough of america to actively prevent the advancement of white people they cannot be truly 'racist' (well, by the general dictionary definition they can). Hell, I'm a middle calss white American so I really don't have the right to say any of this, but it's basically based on what I've heard from people other races. Anyhow, I dig this record.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

all i have to say to this reviewer is .. you don't get it. you're white. dead prez hate you. don't support them.

AlmostPunkEnough (September 25, 2005)

BSD, you're right that the inner-city school systems problems aren't a product of the white man keeping the black man down, but it goes a lot deeper than just being spread to thin.

underfunding is certainly an issue, but a lot of these kids have no desire to learn or even get out of their current situation. they feel like they're trapped regardless of what they do, and don't have many examples of people who escaped the lifestyle through getting an education. all they are exposed to are their peers who 'made it' through sports and music, no one praises the ghetto kid who broke through and became a doctor, in fact, that kid probably got his balls busted every day for being smart.

NYC public schools are overcrowded, and filled with a majority of 'poor' students, and no amount of funding can change that. first issue is they just need more schools. unfortualtley, population trends show that these schools won't be needed in 15-20 years so no one wants to build them. the system pushes these kids through cause no one feels like dealing with the problems they cause, they just want them to be someone elses issue as soon as possible. go sit outside Lehman High School in the Bronx when it lets out any given day, see how many fights there are, see how the Board of Ed. cops ignore what goes on, just like the teachers who are leaving. no one gives a shit. if your idea is paying people to care more, then you're already pointed in the right direction.

wehavecomeforyourchildren (September 25, 2005)

brian,

i've only heard the song a couple times and it was awhile ago. you're right, some of the bands are not only credible, but they're good too. i don't like all the bands you listed, but most of them i at least have respect for.

when i think of the song though, i usually just tend to remember death cab, coheed, taking back sunday, fall out boy and other similar crap.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

I am not going to comment about everything this band does, but if their arguments against the police and media are as half-assed and stupid as those against the school system, I find it hard to take them seriously.

The reason inner-city schools are such a mess is because they're spread too thin, under-funded and there aren't enough teachers to fit the unstable environment. It's not because white teachers want to flunk black students or because they don't care...

-Will

thefirstfive (September 25, 2005)

Fuck Dead Prez. You can't fight racists by being a fucking racist.

Anonymous (September 25, 2005)

In terms of attitude and ideology, this band is a helluva lot more punk than most punk bands around today. I just hope people are open-minded enough to listen to 'em.

inagreendase (September 25, 2005)

the Gym Class Heroes composing a song of name-drops, especially when the names dropped are among the worst in independent and mainstream music.

Yes, because Death Cab, Cursive, Sunny Day Real Estate, Planes Mistaken for Stars, Hey Mercedes, At the Drive-In, ...Trail of Dead, Jets to Brazil, and Hot Water Music are widely considered outright terrible bands in independent music, especially around these parts.

Dude, hate the song all you want for its cheesy, likely "look at us we've got cred!" purpose, but you can't deny that a good portion of the namedrops are credible, well-respected bands in their respective niches.

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